Sunday, June 06, 2010

LightSpeed what is your position?

June 6, 2010 13:00 PST
Position: 34°44.0841 N 120°43.8631 W
Underway toward San Louis Obispo Bay

Our blissful if foggy conditions reported in the earlier post from 3 hours ago have officially abated. Twenty eight knot head winds have slowed our progress to around 4 knots over ground from the previous upper 6 knot range. Breaking seas in the neighborhood of 9-11+ feet provide for an occasional if not vigorous washing of our pilot house windows. I just awoke from a nice 1 hour nap as Kathy finished preparing our favorite comfort food for rough seas, Kraft Macaroni and Cheese. The sunny and warm pilot house of our Chris White Atlantic 42 is priceless in these conditions. Kathy is now napping.

Our fast talking friend on 'Frontier Patrol' is keeping close tabs on us via VHF 16 as we run parallel about 1nm West of the Missile test areas. Apparently, they have lost radar contact with us in building seas and now call us regularly for position updates to ensure we are not in the danger zone. Very thoughtful of them. After speaking with our 'Frontier Patrol' friend for at least the 20th time today and anticipating another 20 conversations, I asked for his name. The response was 'Negative, Sir, just Frontier Patrol'. Perhaps, first names are a now a mater of National Security?

Last I spoke with 'Frontier Patrol' about 30 seconds ago I asked if they were going to call me every 15 minutes for a position update. 'Yes, sir' was the reply. I'm considering giving 'Frontier Patrol' the nick name of 'Big Brother', but since I'm close to the missile test fire zone maybe not... you shouldn't tease the guys with the missiles.

In regards to position reporting s/v LightSpeed is equipped with an ACR Class B AIS transponder. The AIS unit broadcast our position, speed, course and vessel name automatically every second via VHF. I asked 'Frontier Patrol' if they were tracking me on AIS and was informed that they are not yet equipped with this 10 year new technology as it was still in the procurement process.

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